Tories demand ethics investigation into Liberal MP over 2017 trip to Italy

·1 min read

OTTAWA — The federal Conservatives are shining a light on what they deem a Liberal ethics violation, calling for an investigation into a Liberal MP's trip to Italy in 2017.

The Tories cite media reports that said longtime legislator Judy Sgro visited the small city of Matera in 2017 along with other politicians on a paid-for jaunt, but say she did not publicly disclose the excursion.

The Toronto Star reported in 2017 that the Basilicata Cultural Society of Canada, which promotes the culture of that region of southern Italy in Canada, sponsored the trip, citing an admission by Sgro.

Sgro, a Toronto MP since 1999, later said her time exploring the renowned caves and sparse vineyards of Matera came at no expense to Canadian taxpayers, telling CBC News that she paid for the visit herself.

Trips sponsored by third parties are allowed under parliamentary conflict-of-interest rules, so long as legislators report the gift to the ethics commissioner.

Conservative MP Laila Goodridge wrote to commissioner Mario Dion this week asking for a probe to determine whether Sgro contravened conflict of interest rules for parliamentarians.

The Liberals did not reply immediately to a request for comment.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 21, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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